Storm Highway by Dan Robinson
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April Showers . . . of Sparks

By DAN ROBINSON
Storm Chaser/Photographer
25 Years of Storm Chasing
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You know, I'm glad you stopped by here. Us West Virginians look forward to company, even if you're a 'virtual visitor'. I feel like we're friends already. I'm thankful to God for the great friends I have from around here. I'm grateful most of all, though, for my best friend. He was telling me the other day about wanting to meet you. So, I'll just introduce you to him while you're here. Sound good?

The trees were still bare when this early spring storm surprised Charleston at 9:00 PM on April 11, 1999.

It started out with only weak in-cloud lightning flashes, but quickly progressed to a adrenaline-pumping storm with a loud, close cloud-to-ground strike less than 1/2 mile away. The tape recorder caught the crash of thunder from the strike.

Since the storm intensified so fast, I didn't have the camera quite ready for that one- but I caught the next lightning event, two simultaneous cloud-to-ground strikes. One was a strong flash about 1.5 miles away, the other a closer, weaker strike about 1/2 away. The thunder from this strike matches the photo- you hear a soft crackle from the closer strike followed by a deep, powerful boom from the farther bolt. The clicking is from my camera shutter.

The greenish glare at the bottom is from a nearby streetlight (one of a lightning photographer's arch enemies).

This was the first decent storm- and my first lightning catch- of 1999.

Camera/Lens/Film: 35mm Minolta SRT201 SLR, 35mm lens, Kodak 100 ASA.
Exposure: 10 seconds @ F8

[ click image to enlarge ]

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25 Years of Storm Chasing
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